Originally Posted by F. Corbera
In the earliest periods of black tie, stepped or notch lapels were common. If you think about an early term for a tuxedo, a "dress lounge," you might understand why.
Between then and the present, there was consolidation around peaked lapels, a consolidation challenged by the imposition of mass RTW patterns for suits on to cheap dinner suits for rent or sake.
I must be from the earliest periods. My Paul Stuart Tux dates from 1965 and has
notch lapels, flap pockets, natural shoulders, and a center vent. Miracle of miracles,
it still fits (more or less). At the time it was purchased, the standard Brooks model
had peak lapels and, besom like pockets, similar to those on the US Navy officer's uniform.